August 5, 2011

OPP (Other People's Produce)

There are many great things about living in Washington, D.C. I love having access to museums, history, some beautiful parks (haven't been to Meridian Hill Park? Change that this weekend!), theater and some seriously excellent restaurants. Great inventions like ZipCar and the granny cart have made grocery shopping easier, and it seems like every year there are more farmers' markets cropping up, so you can get fresh, locally-grown produce almost every day of the week.

That said, I am a midwestern girl, and there are times that I miss the relative space that living there provides. Don't get me wrong, I grew up in a city. But the city I grew up in was not like D.C. - even college student apartments were often duplexes, and virtually everyone I knew growing up lived in a single-family home. And while I love the hustle and bustle of urban living, there are times I kind of wish I could live in a smaller city, where I could afford a house and a big back yard and do some REAL gardening (not that I don't love my balcony garden! But you can't grow pumpkins on a balcony garden.)

For now though, I must live out my idyllic dreams vicariously through other people - in this case, my mother. She and my step-mom have been working hard on a lovely garden in their backyard in Akron, and the other day she sent me some fantastic photos of what they've grown!

"Everything in the garden is a lot bigger now than when I took the pictures - it kind of looks like a tomato/cucumber/potato jungle."

In the raised bed they are growing:
beefsteak tomatoes
grape tomatoes
pickling cucumbers

My mom reports that they've been pickling some of the tomatoes and cukes, so fingers crossed I get to have some when I go home for Thanksgiving! She offered to send some back when we go out to Ohio over Labor Day, but I think the TSA might have a few thoughts on that.

Perhaps fried?

They also have a garden along the side of the house, where they are growing:
yellow and red bell peppers
cherry tomatoes
heirloom tomatoes
purple basil
green basil

Do you have a balcony or backyard garden? Send pictures to and tell me what you're planning on making with your harvest!

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